Riding your bike provides freedom, exercise, and a greener commute. But bike theft threatens that freedom. Over 500,000 bicycles are stolen in the US and UK every year. As an avid cyclist, I want to enjoy rides without worrying if my bike will still be there when I return. That’s why I was keen to test the Sherlock Plus GPS anti-theft bike tracker.
This covert GPS tracking device promises real-time location monitoring and alerts if your bike moves. With this Sherlock bike tracker review, I’ll share my experience using Sherlock Plus for over 6 months. You’ll learn:
- How Sherlock Plus works to deter bike theft
- Key features like app connectivity and motion detection
- How it compares to AirTags and other GPS trackers
- Insights from real-world testing for theft prevention
- Tips for optimal installation and use
- Worthwhile or not for the £225 price tag?
I’ve tested numerous bike security devices. While locks deter opportunistic thieves, determined criminals can defeat them. GPS trackers like Sherlock offer another layer of protection and recovery if your bike is stolen. Let’s see if Sherlock Plus stands out.
An Inside Look at the Sherlock Plus Bike GPS Tracker
At barely 2 inches long and 0.5 inches wide, the Sherlock Plus device easily slides into your handlebars. Weighing just 50g, it’s unnoticeable while riding. The anodized aluminum construction makes it rugged enough for all weather conditions.
I appreciate that it’s completely concealed when installed properly. Thieves can’t tamper with or disable something they can’t see. The integrated USB charging port makes powering up easy.
Key Features of the Sherlock Bike GPS Tracker
While the size allows discreet installation, it’s the features that make this tracker worthwhile. Here are the capabilities that set Sherlock Plus apart:
Real-time GPS tracking – The device provides location data updated every 60 seconds when tracking mode is active. You can check on your bike at any time like a car GPS tracker.
Worldwide 4G connectivity – With 4G LTE capability, Sherlock Plus can track your bike’s location wherever you roam. No geographic limits.
Motion detection alerts – If the tracker detects any movement, it instantly sends push notifications to your phone.
Historical tracking data – The app stores location data for the past 90 days so you can view past trips and pinpoint if/when your bike was taken.
2-week battery life – Up to 14 days of runtime before needing a recharge makes this highly usable.
Weatherproof design – The aluminum housing and waterproof seal ensures the tracker works in wet conditions.
App connectivity – iOS and Android apps provide monitoring, alerts, and anti-theft features.
These capabilities mean you can monitor your bike from anywhere and get immediate alerts to potential theft attempts. The historical data also enables tracing your bike’s route after theft. Next I’ll share how well the Sherlock Plus worked during my testing period.Shop Sherlock Hidden GPS Tracker on Amazon
Putting Sherlock Bike Tracker to the Test
To fully evaluate the Sherlock Plus tracker, I used it daily for over 6 months as I commuted to work on my road bike. Here are the key criteria I assessed during real-world testing:
The anti-theft device needs to be easy to install to be practical. With the Sherlock tracker, installing it inside my handlebars took under 5 minutes using the included hex key. The setup guide was clear and I had it positioned properly on the first try. It fits seamlessly inside the bar ends, completely invisible externally.
Verdict: Excellent quick and simple installation.
I rode nearly 500 miles with Sherlock Plus installed to determine GPS tracking precision. The device delivered accurate real-time location data during all test rides, whether in the city or countryside. It updates every 60 seconds via the app when tracking mode is on.
Location precision was within 20 feet which is ample accuracy to track a stolen bike. The historical data also makes it easy to view prior trips and pinpoint exactly when your bike was taken if stolen.
Verdict: Highly precise GPS tracking capabilities.
Motion Detection Alerts
A key anti-theft feature is receiving alerts anytime your parked bike is disturbed or moved. I tested the motion detection numerous times and instantly received push notifications if I shook or tilted the bike. Alerts were delivered to my phone within 10 seconds.
You can also remotely turn on tracking mode via the app if your bike is stolen. This activates real-time location data useful for recovery. The app worked seamlessly both on iOS and Android.
Verdict: Fast, reliable motion detection alerts.
Ease of Use
Beyond initial setup, the device needs to be easy to operate daily. With Sherlock Plus, I simply had to periodically recharge the battery every 2 weeks on average depending on usage. With the USB charging port this took an hour or so.
The mobile app is straightforward to use if you do want to check your bike’s location or toggle settings. But most of the time, it works automatically in the background to detect unauthorized movement.
Verdict: Extremely simple to use with minimal maintenance required.
Is the 2 week battery runtime adequate or too short? During testing I got right around 14 days before needing to recharge. That equals the stated battery life.
Two weeks means you do need to charge it a bit more often than an AirTag. But the battery lasts long enough to provide solid protection between charges. Carrying the short charging cable makes powering up simple.
Verdict: Battery life matches claims and provides enough runtime between charges.
Based on my extensive hands-on testing, Sherlock Plus delivers on its key capabilities. The fast motion detection alerts, precise GPS tracking, and easy operation make it an extremely effective anti-theft device.
Next, I’ll compare Sherlock to alternatives like Apple AirTags, Tile trackers, and other GPS options.
How Does Sherlock Compare to AirTags and Other GPS Trackers?
When protecting your bike, you may be considering Sherlock Plus vs Apple AirTags or other tracking devices. Here’s how Sherlock compares to the top alternatives:
AirTags – Apple’s trackers utilize crowd-sourced location which can be slower to pinpoint stolen bikes. Short battery life at just 1 year. But AirTags are smaller and cheaper at $29 each.
Tile – Bluetooth only with limited range. Not designed for theft prevention far from your phone’s location. More affordable but limited functionality.
Spybike – Compact GPS tracker but requires paid subscription for real-time tracking after 2 week free trial. Shorter 7 day battery life.
Invoxia – Reliable GPS tracking with apps and alerts. But device is bulkier and only rated IP67 waterproof. Higher price tag.
Sherlock – Purpose-built for bikes with optimized features. Longer battery runtime, concealed fitment, and worldwide tracking capability.
For under £250, Sherlock Plus delivers the right blend of covert installation, precise tracking, motion alerts, long runtime, and theft deterrence. Let’s examine the pros and cons in more detail next.
Pros of Using Sherlock Bike Tracker
Reliable worldwide tracking – I encountered no connectivity issues during testing. 4G LTE enables dependable live tracking anywhere.
Long battery life – Lasting 2 weeks before recharging is practical for everyday use. Quick to power up when needed unlike Tile trackers with non-replaceable batteries.
Real-time motion alerts – Immediate notifications if your bike is disturbed keep you aware. Helpful both for theft deterrence and recovery.
Small concealed design – Fits entirely inside handlebars so thieves can’t detect or disable it. Weighs only 50g so it’s unnoticeable when riding.
Weatherproof – Aluminum housing and waterproof seal enables using in any riding conditions. I had no issues in wet weather.
Precise GPS tracking – Within 20 feet allows pinpointing your bike’s location if moved or stolen. Historical data helps retrace routes.
Easy installation – Can be inserted into handlebar ends in just 5 minutes using the included tools and guides. No electrical expertise required.
For bike protection, Sherlock Plus checks all the key boxes. Next let’s consider a few downsides.
Cons of the Sherlock GPS Bike Tracker
Requires occasional charging – While the 2 week battery life is decent, it’s not as long as some competitors. The tracker needs occasional powering up.
Not globally available – Currently only available in the UK and Europe. Expanding to North America and worldwide markets soon.
Price – At around £225, it’s more expensive than basic Bluetooth tags from Tile or Apple. But far more affordable than many GPS trackers.
Considering its capabilities, Sherlock Plus offers good value for the price. The only notable drawback is needing to recharge the battery after 2 weeks.
What Owners Are Saying in Sherlock Plus Reviews
When considering a new product, I always want to hear what other users’ real-world experience. Here are excerpts from Sherlock bike tracker reviews by owners:
Thomas S. ★★★★☆
“I’ve tested the Sherlock Plus daily for 3 months now. It helps put my mind at ease when locking up in public. The motion alerts work flawlessly if anyone even touches my bike. Tracking seems highly accurate too based on my checks. Installation was very quick and straightforward. My main gripe is having to recharge the battery after just 14 days or so. Besides that, an excellent theft deterrent device.”
Anne J. ★★★★★
“This tracker gives me serious peace of mind anytime I have to lock my road bike in public. Before I was constantly worried about returning to find it stolen even with the best locks. The alerts from Sherlock if my bike is moved at all are amazingly quick. This lets me park with confidence. Well worth the price for theft prevention.”
Lucas P. ★★★★☆
“Very easy to install into my handlebars and worked great during testing. Never failed to provide a location and the battery lasted the promised two weeks. My only complaint is it seems like overkill if you rarely lock outside – more useful for commuters routinely leaving bikes unattended. I do recommend it if theft is a major concern.”
Based on my experience aligned with user reviews, Sherlock Plus delivers as an highly effective anti-theft device. It’s the next best thing to having 24/7 security guards protecting your bike!
Professional Recommendations on Bike Security
I also wanted advice from law enforcement and security experts on the best ways to safeguard bikes. The consensus is taking a layered approach with high quality locks AND a covert GPS tracker is ideal.
Here are tips from the pros to maximize bike security:
“We strongly advise riders to use a quality U-lock in combination with a well-hidden GPS tracker. This makes stealing the bike more difficult for thieves while also providing monitoring and recovery assistance if it is taken. GPS trackers are a useful supplement to proper locking procedures.”
– Officer K. Briggs, Seattle Police Dept
“I recommend concealed GPS trackers on any bike that will be left unattended in public areas. Models like Sherlock are easily hidden inside the frame tubing or handlebars. Most thieves are unaware and will not find trackers placed out of sight. Used along with U-locks through the frame and rear wheel, you have a well-protected bike.”
– M. Johnson, Master Locksmith
Following best practices by combining robust locking with covert tracking provides layered security for your bike.
Installation Tips for Sherlock Bike Tracker
To gain maximum benefit from Sherlock Plus, proper installation is important:
- Choose concealed locations like handlebar ends or seatposts. Avoid externally visible spots like AirTag bike mounts.
- Ensure the tracker is firmly secured and does not rattle when riding.
- Test motion detection alerts before locking in public. Make sure notifications are prompt.
- Check tracking accuracy with trial location checks via the app. Enable regular updates.
- Use tamper-proof screws after installing if your bike will be unattended for long periods.
- Keep the small charging cable with you to conveniently power up the battery as needed.
- Occasionally check the app to make sure the device remains connected and charged.
Following these tips provides reliable security and optimizes Sherlock’s capabilities.
Is the Sherlock Plus Bike Tracker Worth the Cost?
With an MSRP of £225 including 2 years of data service, Sherlock Plus is a significant investment. But considering a new e-bike can easily cost £2,000 and up, it’s worthwhile protection.
For commuters and frequent riders who regularly park bikes unattended, Sherlock Plus pays for itself by preventing just one theft. Compared to replacing an entire bike, the one-time tracker cost is minimal.
There are cheaper options like Apple AirTags or basic Bluetooth trackers. However, these lack live tracking and global connectivity essential for bike security.
For riders seeking sophisticated theft prevention, Sherlock Plus delivers robust features at a fair price. Contact Strategic Analytics Team to learn more or order a tracker.
Key Takeaways From My Sherlock Review
- Sherlock Plus utilizes concealed GPS tracking to deter bike theft and aid recovery if stolen.
- Discreetly fits inside handlebars with easy 5 minute installation. Almost unnoticeable when riding.
- Real-time location tracking works reliably to pinpoint your bike’s location worldwide.
- Motion detection alerts notify your phone in seconds if your parked bike is disturbed. Enables tracking a stolen bike.
- Up to 2 week runtime per charge makes keeping powered up convenient.
- Delivers precise GPS monitoring and effective anti-theft features for £225 with included data service.
- Recommended as a key additional layer of security along with quality locks.
For bike owners concerned about theft, a covert GPS tracker like Sherlock Plus provides next level protection and peace of mind. My extensive testing proved it’s a worthwhile investment for riders who frequently lock bikes in public areas.